By: Cynthia A.
By: Aimée Carter
Published: April 19, 2011
Publisher: Harlequin Teen
Series: The Goddess Test
Genre: Young Adult, Mythology, Paranormal Romance, Urban Fantasy
Every girl who has taken the test has died. Now it’s Kate’s turn. It has always been just Kate and her mother, but now the events have added Henry into the mix, a man who is dark and tortured, brooding, who just so happens to claim to be Hades, the God of the Underworld. Kate is sure he’s crazy, but then the as mysterious almost magical events happen, Kate finds herself holding herself together for him, to not fail and be his bride. Now all she has to do is survive 6 months.
The Goddess Test follows one Kate Winters as she movies from New York to the small town of Eden to take care of her ailing mother who lives on borrowed time. Then, events take a turn and a high school prank goes wrong, Kate finds herself giving up 6 months of her life to undo the tragedy that fell on her prankster. That’s when Henry makes her the offer and Kate begins to question if myth’s are truly real.
For anyone who is a fan of Greek Mythology, this novel does not tarnish the mythos. Much like with the Percy Jackson series, this novel changes some aspects to reintroduce it and not only modernize it but also grounds the characters for readers to enjoy. It makes the story more than mythology. Above all though, it does not tarnish Greek Mythology.
With that in mind, this was a well-written and structured novel. The story begins by establishing who the character Kate is, where her priorities lie and her living situation (i.e. taking care of her dying mother). As the characters enter Eden, Aimée Carter establishes the scenes thoroughly, allowing the reader to see what Kate sees and leaving some of the details up to the readers’ imagination. Through Kate and through Carter’s writing, readers get a sense of who the characters are and what makes each one of them different from the others.
However, what really makes this novel work is the journey Kate takes, not only in the physical sense but also on the metaphysical sense. Readers see who she was and are able to see her growth from page one up until the last page. Readers are able to understand her character, allowing readers to connect to her character. Carter writes her character in such a way that allows readers to see every decision she makes and the reason she makes it. It’s not very often then readers are allowed to see such a grounded and down to earth character that things her actions through. Kate not only thinks about herself, but she things about the consequences of her actions, thinks how they would affect those around her. That is what makes her character fun to read and stand out.
While the story was interesting, a retelling of the story of Persephone and Hades, the ending, the villain was made obvious about halfway through the book, character development was the main aspect in this novel that hooks in readers and propels them through to the end. Nevertheless, throughout the story, there are subtle hints and details that add so much to the story that once readers get to the end they are drawn back to the beginning to re-read the novel.
The Goddess Test offers fans of Greek Mythology a new, creative and inventive story that takes the story of Persephone and Hades to new heights. ★★★☆☆ (B+)